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Camera mounted on Guided scope...without the scope

Started by thessinfamily, 12/18/2007 06:44PM
Posted 12/18/2007 06:44PM Opening Post
Not sure where to start but I would like to take a fairly decent computerized telescope mount and place my camera directly on it. I dont really want to use a scope and piggy back. Is this at all possible? If so what mount and mount adapter do I use?
Posted 12/18/2007 07:14PM #1
Jim, of course it is possible to skip the scope.

To figure out just what you would need, though, we would have to know what type of mount you are talking about.

How does a scope currently attach to the mount? If it is a fork mount, it may be a little tricky. If it is a standard GEM, then you merely need some kind of plate that fits in the GEM saddle, and in turn has a 1/4-20 screw in it to hold the camera.

What kind of mount are you talking?
Of course, if you skip the scope, what are you going to use to guide the exposure? (Not that that is critical with most camera lenses.)
Posted 12/25/2007 08:47PM #2
THe Camera is a Nikon D80 with a 500mm F/8 Lens may or may not be coupled with a 2X teleconverter(f/16 1000mm).
Just depends on how wide I want the view.
Trying to do this for under 300 bucks as I saw most guided scope mounts are anywhere from 400-1000+ Dollars.
Shutter lengths would be limited to 30 Seconds which is already catching some nebulas, most notably in the orion area. Just want to kind of guide it a little bit to try and get some better pics.
Posted 12/26/2007 07:18AM #3

With a wide angle lens (<30 mm 35 mm equivalent) you should be able to stick a camera on any photo tripod, and using a 30 second exposure, get good all-sky shots.

With any decent tracking mount, you could perhaps push that to a minute or a minute and a half.

With a longer focal length lens, you will need good tracking. I doubt anything is available at less than about $800 new, $350 used that could handle a camera and lens at above about 200 mm.

And then there is the problem--do you want to spend money for a drive/mount that you will quickly trade in when you find that it is inadequate for anything of any length of time...Or would you rather invest in something that will last for a while?